May 11, 2007

Letter to the Editor

Let’s give socialism a chance

Regarding, Ryan McCarl’s “Want My Coke? Then Pry It from My Cold, Dead Fingers,” (5/8/07): There is a very good reason why some of us privileged people should be unhappy with capitalism. We know the opportunities that prosperity brought to us, and we can see that most people do not have these opportunities. And we believe that it is unjust to spend most of your life laboring for the benefit of a select few. Worse than unjust, it is unnecessary. Capitalism has given us the productive capacity to end demeaning work. But so long as these forces are governed by the inhuman logic of exploitation, then most of the human race will have to live and die in artificial scarcity.

You can spend your life defending an unjust world. Or you can help bring the liberty and prosperity of the few to the many. It’s not going to be possible with a bigger safety net. It’s not going to be possible with expanded public works. It’s time to put socialism back on the table. It’s a simple and fair proposition: Expand democracy to the economy. Let those who toil get the fruit of their labor. There are many proposals for how to best do this. Some involve markets; some don’t. Some involve states; some don’t. Capitalism had a beginning and it will have an end. Will that end be socialism or barbarism? Let’s get to work.

Benjamin Shepard

Class of 2008